† ἀγάπη, -ης, ἡ [in LXX for אַהֲבָהH160, which is also rendered by ἀγάπησις and φιλία;] gramGrp/ love, goodwill, esteem. Outside of bibl. and eccl. books, there is no clear instance (with Deiss., LAE, 18:4, 70:2, cf. the same writer in Constr. Quar., ii, 4; and with MM, VGT, s.v., cf. Dr. Moulton in Exp. Times, xxvi, 3, 139). In NT, like ἀγαπάω, -ῶ1.(a) to one another, Jo 13:35; (b) to God, I Jo 2:5. 2.(a) God's love: to men, Ro 5:8; to Christ, Jo 17:26; (b) Christ's love to men: Ro 8:35. 3. In pl., love feasts: Ju 12 (DB, iii, 157).
SYN.: φιλία. ἀ., signifying properly (v.s. ἀγαπάω) love which chooses its object, is taken over from LXX, where its connotation is more general, into NT, and there used exclusively to express that spiritual bond of love between God and man and between man and man, in Christ, which is characteristic of Christianity. It is thus distinct from φιλία, friendship (Ja 4:4 only), στοργή, natural affection (in NT only in compounds, v.s. ἄστοργος) and ἔρως, sexual love, which is not used in NT, its place being taken by ἐπιθυμία. (Cf. ἀγαπάω; and v. Abbott, Essays, 70f.; DB, vol. i., 555; Cremer, 13, 593; MM, VGT, s.v.).
Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon
ἀγάπ-η, ἡ, love, LXX.Jer.2.2, LXX.Cant.2.7, al.; ἀ. καὶ μῖσος LXX.Eccl.Ec.; uncertain reading in “PBerol.” 9859 (2nd c.BC), Philodemus Philosophus “περὶ παρρησίας” p.52+2nd c.BC+ O; of the love of husband and wife, Scholia Ptolemaeus Mathematicus “Tetrabiblos” 52. __2 especially love of God for man and of man for God, LXX.Wis.3.9, Aristeas 229; φόβος καὶ ἀ. Philo Judaeus 1.283, cf. NT.Rom.5.8, NT.2Cor.5.14, NT.Luke.11.42, al.+1st c.AD+:—also brotherly love, charity, NT.1Cor.13.1, al. __II in plural, love-feast, NT.2Pet.2.13, NT.Jude.12. __IIIalms, charity, PGen. 14 (4th-5th c.AD). __IV ἀγάπη θεῶν, title of Isis, “POxy.” 1380.109 (2nd c.AD).